Lock notes on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac

You can secure notes that have your personal data, like financial details, medical information, or website logins — with a password, fingerprint, or even your face.

With the Notes app, you can lock your notes with a password, or Face ID or Touch ID on supported devices.*

If you're signed in to iCloud with a Managed Apple ID, you can't lock your notes. Also, you can only use Touch ID on a Mac that has a Touch Bar or Touch ID power button.

Before you begin


Set up your notes password

Before you can lock your notes, create a password that you can easily remember. And make sure that you give yourself a password hint. If you forget your password, Apple can't help you reset it.

If you access your iCloud notes on more than one Apple device, you'll use the same notes password to lock and unlock all of them.

* If you enable Face ID or Touch ID for your notes password, it adds the encryption keys used to encrypt your notes to your keychain — which can be accessed with your device passcode. This means that anyone with your device passcode can access your locked notes. For maximum security, you can opt to not enable Face ID or Touch ID for your notes password.

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

You can create a password in your device Settings or directly in the Notes app. Then you can enable Face ID or Touch ID, so that you can use your face or fingerprint to unlock your protected notes.

Create a password in Settings

  1. Go to Settings > Notes.
  2. Tap Password. If you have multiple accounts, tap the account you want to create a password for before you set up the password.
  3. Enter a password, then make sure to give yourself a password hint. If your device supports it, enable Face ID or Touch ID.
  4. Tap Done.

 

Create a password in Notes

  1. Open a note that you want to lock.
  2. Tap the Action button  , then tap Lock Note.
  3. Enter a password, then make sure to give yourself a password hint. If your device supports it, enable Face ID or Touch ID.
  4. Tap Done.

 

After you lock a note, it's automatically protected with your password on all your devices. If you use Face ID or Touch ID to unlock notes on your other devices, you must enter your password, then enable Face ID or Touch ID on the device you're using. Keep in mind that anyone that knows your device passcode can access your locked notes. For maximum security, you can opt to not enable Face ID or Touch ID for your notes password.

On your Mac

You can create a password on your Mac directly in the Notes app. Here's how:

  1. In the menu bar, click Notes > Preferences, then click Set Password.
  2. Enter a password. If you use multiple accounts, click the account you want to create a password for before you set the password.
  3. Give yourself a password hint.
  4. Click Done.


Use Notes password-protection

Whether your note has an image, sketch, inline drawing, map, scanned document, or list of important information, it's easy to keep it safe with password-protection. And when you need to access your secure notes, you can tell which ones are locked directly from the Notes list. Just look for the Lock icon  next to the note. Until you enter your password, use Face ID, or use Touch ID, you only see the title and the last date that it was edited.

 

Lock a note

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Open the note that you want to lock.
  2. Tap the Action   button.
  3. Choose Lock Note.

After you lock your note, it stays open and you'll see the Lock icon  at the top of the screen. You can hide the note's contents when you tap the Lock icon .

On your Mac:

  1. Open the note that you want to lock.
  2. Click the Lock icon .
  3. Choose Lock Note.

Open a locked note

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Tap the locked note.
  2. Tap View Note.
  3. Use Face ID or Touch ID, or enter your password.

On your Mac and iCloud.com:

  1. Click the locked note.
  2. Use Touch ID or enter your password.

All notes locked with that password are unlocked. Your locked notes stay open for several minutes, making it easy for you to jump to another note, copy and paste information from other apps, and more. If you close the Notes app or your device goes to sleep, the note locks again.

Remove a lock

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Tap the locked note.
  2. Enter your password, use Face, or use Touch ID.
  3. Tap the Action button .   
  4. Choose Remove Lock.

On your Mac:

  1. Click the locked note.
  2. Enter your password or use Touch ID.
  3. Click the Lock icon .   
  4. Choose Remove Lock.

When you remove a lock from a note, it's removed on all of the devices that you're signed in to with the same Apple ID.

You can only lock notes on your device and notes in iCloud. You can't lock notes that have PDFs, audio, video, Keynote, Pages, Numbers documents, or notes that use IMAP to sync (like Yahoo, Gmail, and Hotmail). You also can't password protect notes that you share with someone else. If you want to stop sharing a note, open , then tap or click Stop Sharing.


Change your password

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Go to Settings > Notes > Password.
  2. Tap Change Password.*
  3. Enter your old password, then enter a new password and password hint.

On your Mac:

  1. Open Notes.
  2. In the menu bar, choose Notes > Preferences, then click Change Password.*
  3. Enter your old password, then enter a new password and password hint.
  4. Click Change Password.

* If you use multiple accounts, click the account that has the password you want to change before you change the password.


If you forgot your notes password

You can unlock a note only when you enter the password that it's locked with. If you forgot your password, Apple can't help you regain access to your locked notes.

You can create a new password, but this won’t give you access to your old notes. But it will let you password protect any notes that you create going forward with the new password. This could lead to you having multiple notes with different passwords.

If you have multiple passwords, you can't tell which password you should use when you look at your notes in the Notes list. When you open a note locked by your old password but enter your current password, you'll see an alert that you entered the wrong password with a hint for your old one. If you then enter the correct old password, you get the option to update that note's password to your current one.


Reset your notes password

When you reset your Notes password, it doesn't delete or change the password of your notes that are already locked. If you have a note that uses an old password, you can update it to the new password when you enter the old password, remove the old password, then apply your new password to the note.

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Go to Settings > Notes, then tap Password.*
  2. Tap Reset Password.
  3. Enter your Apple ID password.
  4. Tap Reset Password again.
  5. Enter your new password and password hint.

On your Mac:

  1. Open Notes.
  2. In the menu bar, click Notes > Preferences > Reset Password, then click OK.*
  3. Enter your Apple ID password.
  4. Click Reset Password.
  5. Enter your new password and password hint.

 

* If you use multiple accounts, click the account that has the password you want to change before you change the password.

 

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